Thursday, October 2nd8.6°C
22738

Applications for US unemployment benefits fell to 312k last week; near pre-recession levels

WASHINGTON - Fewer Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, as the number of people collecting jobless aid fell to its lowest level in more than six years.

The Labor Department said Thursday that weekly applications for unemployment benefits fell 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted 312,000. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, declined to 311,750.

There are 2.56 million people receiving benefits. That's the lowest total since October 2007, about two months before the recession began.

Jennifer Lee, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets, said the report in a "blinding glimpse of the obvious "_is clearly "good news."

Applications are a proxy for layoffs, so the relatively low number of people seeking benefits shows that employers are letting go of fewer workers. When businesses are confident enough to keep staff, they may also hire more workers. Job gains should feed stronger economic growth.

Earlier this month, the Labor Department said employers added a solid 217,000 jobs in May.

Monthly job gains have averaged 234,000 for the past three months, up sharply from 150,000 in the previous three. The unemployment rate, which is derived from a separate survey, remained at 6.3 per cent in May. That's the lowest rate in more than five years.

The data in Thursday's unemployment benefits report overlaps with the survey for the June jobs report. The low level of applications would suggest similarly strong hiring this month, Lee said.

The steady gains after the economy shrank during the first three months of the year because of the winter weather— point to faster growth ahead.

Gross domestic product fell 1 per cent in the first three months of 2013. Many economists expect that number could be further revised downward, while growth returns as warmer weather has generated more hiring and consumer spending.

The Canadian Press


Read more Business News

22551


Recent Trending




Today's Market
S&P TSX14590.18-215.261
S&P CDNX874.92-21.43
DJIA16738.57-66.14
Nasdaq4390.563-31.522
S&P 5001934.63-11.53
CDN Dollar0.8970+0.0014
Gold1217.00+1.50
Oil88.02-1.09
Lumber345.10+7.30
Natural Gas3.935-0.088

 
Okanagan Companies
Pacific Safety0.1350.00
Knighthawk0.01-0.005
QHR Technologies Inc1.26+0.04
Cantex0.055-0.02
Anavex Life Sciences0.188+0.0076
Metalex Ventures0.0550.00
Russel Metals34.00-0.68
Copper Mountain Mining2.18-0.11
Colorado Resources0.16-0.005
ReliaBrand Inc0.019-0.001
Sunrise Resources Ltd0.065+0.045
Mission Ready Services0.31-0.01

 





FEATURED Property
2094447Beautiful Family Home Nestled on the Hill
$522,900
more details
image2
Click here to feature your property
Please wait... loading


An income investment you may have overlooked

Investors seeking income often limit their selection to bonds and give little or no consideration to preferred shares. They usually ignore preferreds simply because they don't know much about them...


Power-save your way to a down payment

Part 2 of 2 to read Part 1, click here. 5. Dial down your vacations. New York is out. Maybe Buffalo. For West coast, maybe Seattle instead of Hawaii. Use sites like Airbnb (aribnb.ca) to find ch...


A wildly successful manufacturer

Niche food producer “Sweets from the Earth” thrives using innovation, uniqueness and an unwavering focus on quality. A neighbour’s stew turned Ilana Kadonoff off meat at the age of s...

_








Member of BC Press Council


23266